Tag Archives: crochet

A little bit dotty

So I am now a Great Aunt. My niece had her first baby, a girl, this morning. A lovely healthy tall baby with the chubbiest cheeks ever. There’s nothing like being a Great Aunt to make you feel old! Lucky I have my own baby to remind me I’m not that old. Yet. Heh heh.

She didn’t find out the sex of the baby beforehand, which makes the pre-birth crafting slightly more challenging. I had decided on making her a small blanket, crochet for quickness and cotton for ease of use and because it will be a summer baby. But what colours? I pondered this for a while, and then an invitation for her baby shower arrived, using soft grey, yellow and white. Ta dah! Perfect. And even better, I had those colours in stash! So this is what I came up with:

Pattern: Dotty Dots afghan by Teresa Chorzepa, from Lion Brand – a nice easy freebie, which lends itself to lots of variety just by changing the colours and/or size (as I did).
Yarn: Bendigo Woollen Mills 8ply/DK cotton, in glacier (grey), daffodil (yelllow) and parchment (cream). I used just over 200g (one ball!) of the grey, and much less of the other two colours – I think about 65g of the yellow and maybe 5g of the cream. It blocked out beautifully. Very light and drapey.

Hook: 4mm KnitPro wooden hook.
Time: 16 August – 25 September 2014 – finished just in time to block it before the baby shower! A month and a bit – not bad for a small blanket! My crafting time is not what it used to be!

Modifications: I made my version 5×5 squares – mostly because that’s all I had time to do. I would have liked to add an extra row but time beat me. But it will still be a good size for use in the pram or bassinette, I hope – it ended up being 70cm x 65cm (which made me laugh, as it should be square, but anyway!). I also did the edging slightly differently – a round of treble and then a round of dc, all in grey.

Here it is with a stunt baby for scale!



Filed under baby, Crochet, Family, FO2014, stashbuster

With a little help from my friends

Two loads of washing on the line on this lovely sunny breezy winter’s day, a sleeping baby and a slew of FOs. Must be about time for a blog post!

Let’s start with this one – a lovely crochet scarf that I started and finished with the help of some friends.

Pattern: Elise by Evan Plevinski. A lovely easy free pattern. I was inspired to make this by my blog friend Meredith, who made four, or possibly five or six of these in quick succession last year. I think I’d had the pattern in my queue, but it was Meredith’s lovely versions that made me actually start it – which I did at the Knitters Guild knit camp last year.

Yarn: Sundara petite sock yarn in (what else) “Red Roses”. When this colour was released, I clearly had to have it – as did a couple of my friends – we ordered enough to qualify for free shipping, which is a big plus given Sundara’s ridiculously overpriced shipping charges. (I might have ordered enough in sport weight for a cardigan too…). It was a bit of a pain to wind, until I got it going, then it was ok. Great colour though.

Hook: 5.5mm – such a big hook for a fingering/4ply yarn! But worth it – look at the difference blocking makes:

Time: 22 September 2013 – 18 May 2014. I would have finished much earlier, but I ran out of yarn, and I didn’t want to undo a few rows to start the edging early, as it is a fairly small shawl. Fortunately, the group order meant that the lovely DrK had some of the same yarn and was wailing to let me have enough to finish off the edging – which I did one Sunday when I visited her for lunch before she jetted off to the US.

A lovely easy pattern, I would definitely recommend it.


Filed under Crochet, FO2014, red

Seeing stars

I had been waiting until I actually block this FO before posting about it, but as it’s been two months since I finished it, and I still haven’t blocked it, despite the unseasonably warm weather we’ve been having, I thought I might as well show it off. Especially since it was a long time coming, or at least, it seemed that way!

TA-Dah! It’s my Starburst Afghan! Or, should I say, it’s Harry’s Starburst Afghan!

(Connor just had to be in the shot too!). I took these photos at the start of this month – it’s amazing how much he’s grown since then, in such a (relatively) short period of time.

Pattern: Starburst Entrelac Afghan by Magan Granholm, from the book Unexpected Afghans by Robyn Chacula. A deceptively tricky looking pattern, it’s actually quite easy, although the joining instructions for some of the diamonds could perhaps be a little clearer. It is made in the round, one colour at a time, and each diamond builds on the previous. No need to cut the yarn until you finish the round.

Yarn: I was originally planning on doing it in the same colours as the original, which I really liked, using Wollmeise DK. Which I would have had to buy. So then I came to my senses and decided to use stash yarn, Bendigo Woollen Mills Cotton, instead. Much better idea! Yay me for stash busting, heh! So I used under 2 balls (they are big balls, 200g each!) of each colour, pomegranate, French navy, sky, glacier and parchment.

Hook: 5.5mm KnitPro interchangeable hook – these are regular crochet hooks with a screw on the end enabling a cable to be added for wide Tunisian projects – as the diamonds use a maximum of 12-13 stitches at any one time, a regular straight hook is enough. These are really nice hooks, very smooth and easy to use.
Time: 20 August 2013 – 1 April 2014. I had a bit of a break in the latter part of last year, but from late December I pretty much just worked on this project, in an attempt to finish it before Harry arrived. Which of course, didn’t happen! But it’s been too warm to need it anyway, and I finished it in plenty of time for the cooler weather. Whereupon we immediately had a late autumn record-breaking heat wave! As soon as I finished this, I went on a new project starting spree! More about those projects another time!

Modifications: I didn’t modify the pattern at all, but I did have a bit of a messy centre – I’m pretty sure it was not meant to have a huge hole in the centre, and my joining method at the end of this round was a bit messy, but once I got the hang f the pattern and the joins in particular, it was much neater! And that hole at the centre was easily fixed once the blanket was finished.

I have to admit that towards the end of this project I was a bit over it, it was taking forever. But I remember when I started it how much I loved it, and once it was done the love returned.

It is pretty nice, if I do say so myself!


Filed under baby, Crochet, FO2014, stashbuster

Happy Easter

I’m a bit late with this Easter post as we went away to my mum’s for the Easter long weekend – no Internet access but lots of sunshine and knitting time. It was a really lovely weekend away. My first time home since mum sold the family home and moved into a lovely new flat. I thought it might be a bit weird staying somewhere else, but mum has been able to take much of her furniture with her, and so it felt immediately like home. And she is so happy and proud of her fantastic new place, it is wonderful to see.

But the real purpose of this post is to show off the bunnies I made for the boys for Easter!

Pattern: Easy Easter Bunny by Janette Williams – the pattern is hosted on her blog, and has a really detailed step by step picture tutorial, so is perfect for even a beginner crocheter. And even better, is free.

Yarn: Bendigo Woollen Mills 8ply cotton, in a range of colours – the red and blues one was for Harry, and the red, purple and blue one for Connor. Although when Connor woke up on Easter Sunday and found his bunny, he decided it was for Harry, even though Harry had his own. Crafting Fail!

(One of these things is not like the other ones!)

Hook: 3.5 mm hook – the Bendi cotton is quite thin for an 8ply/DK weight yarn, so I wanted to use a small hook to keep it nice and firm, and I think it worked well.

Time: 11 – 19 April 2014. They are really quick to make but I had to restrict myself to night times and other times when Connor was out of the house, so as not to spoil the surprise. I finished the second one on the drive to mum’s, while Connor was asleep in the back seat!


What I learnt: Don’t make pompoms with cotton yarn! They just fall apart! I think I knew that in the back of my mind before I tried it, but it was quickly confirmed! So I pulled out some nice wool to make the floofy pompom tails! Also, those safety eyes are REALLY hard to attach. I’m almost ashamed to admit I had to ask my husband to attach them.

I’m very happy with these, even if their recipient looks a little less than impressed!


Filed under Crochet, FO2014

Thistle do (insert groan here)

As my mum is visiting this week, I took the opportunity to get out of the house alone for a couple of hours while she did Nanna duty with the boys. I went to the crochet group of the Knitters Guild. It’s a nice group, always offering a tutorial after show and tell and morning tea! This month we learnt how to do a sort of raised or textured stitch called Thistle stitch.

It’s perhaps a bit twee, not really the sort of crochet I do regularly, but I did enjoy making this little sample, and had fun this afternoon trying it out using colour for the thistle, and testing out my theory that it could also pass for a tulip.

Fun! I love seeing what can be done with crochet beyond the granny square (cue another groan!). It’s always good to have a new technique to play with.

And just because I can…here’s the little fellow, at 6.5 weeks:

My mum is quite sure he’s grown! (He has, I know!)


Filed under Crochet, Knitters Guild

Yet another one skein wonder

Not that I’ve been on a run of one-skein wonders, nor do I have any of the books, but if you are looking for a nice easy crochet pattern to use up a ball of long-colour run striping sock yarn, then this is the ideal project!

Pattern: Noro Windowpane Scarf by Adrienne Lash. As mentioned, quick and easy, and also, bonus, free! You can of course, use any long colour change yarn (as I did) or even a solid or semi-solid yarn. But I really do think that it is a pattern that allows the yarn to do all the work when you use Noro or similar. I worked on this project during crochet clinics at the shop, when I didn’t have any students or wasn’t immediately helping anyone, and it received lots of favourable comments.

Yarn: 1 x 100g ball of Schoppel-Wolle Crazy Zauberball, in the grey/black/white colour (11532100). One ball in this width gives the perfect length scarf, I think. I was also tempted, while I was making it, to actually make two out of the same yarn and sew them together lengthwise to make it more of a wrap. I think it would look really effective with the colour changes being in different spots on both scarves, but sewn together (if that makes sense?).

Hook: 3.5mm Clover soft touch hook

Time: 24 May – 8 November 2013 – it didn’t really take that long to make, but I usually only worked on it every fortnight during clinics, in between helping others and other projects too, so it would work up quite quickly – plenty of time to run one up for a Christmas present if you needed to! And something I just noticed, I bought this ball of yarn on November 13, 2012 – it’s so rare that I use yarn within a year of buying it, I almost need to celebrate that! By buying some more, perhaps, heh heh.

Modifications: I made the scarf one repeat wider than the pattern specified – the good thing about this pattern is you can adapt it to any width. I also did the “solid” rows in treble (US dc) rather than half-treble, I just thought it looked better (and I prefer to work trebles than htr)

I think it would also work really well as a cowl, just by joining the ends together. I can see myself making this pattern again (something I don’t often say!)


Filed under Crochet, FO2013, stashbuster

Arts and crafts

Last month Connor’s daycare had an arts and crafts afternoon, so I asked if they would like me to knit or crochet and I received an enthusiastic “yes please” from the director. I thought about doing socks in the round on dpns, since that is a bit unusual for the non-knitter these days, but decided that crochet would be way easier and I could work up some little samples that the kids could take home if they wanted.

I ended up making some flowers:

I glued these onto pipe cleaner stalks – most of these were from the excellent 100 Flowers to Knit and Crochet.

And I also glued some to hair clips:

These were most popular with the girls! Luckily I have a couple left, which I will add to my niece’s Christmas present.

And finally, I made a bunch of snowflakes (I ADORE crochet snowflakes!)

I adore crochet snowflakes so much I have all of these books:

(Bit insane really, to have so many books!). All of these were from 100 Snowflakes to crochet.

Now I just need to make some for myself! I haven’t made any Christmas decorations this year towards my goal of having a Christmas tree decorated with entirely hand-made decorations – yet! Lucky we’ve got just over 6 weeks until Christmas, heh!


Filed under Crochet

Yes, yes, I did it!

Well, my friends, I am pleased to report I DID IT! With a day to spare (thank goodness it was a warm day to aid speedy drying of the last minute blocking). Phew!

I have to admit, I really did not enjoy the seaming aspect of this project, but I am very happy with the finished product. And I think the bride and groom (my nephew) also appreciated it.

Pattern: Behrens Colourblock Afghan by Leigh Radford, from the fabulous book Unexpected Afghans. I knew, of course, before I started this project, that it involved a lot of seaming, but I somehow convinced myself that it wouldn’t be so bad. Funny how we conveniently ignore the finer details for a project we otherwise really want to make! I thought this would be a good design for the recipients, a bit of a modern twist on the traditional crochet blanket.

Yarn: I changed the colours from the original, and decided on Bendigo Woollen Mills Serenade, a very nice bamboo/wool blend in the perfect colours for the recipients – not bad that I could get all 6 desired colours from a limited edition yarn which only came in (from memory) 10-12 colours in total! I didn’t quite keep track of how much of each colour I used and I forgot to weigh the blanket once finished! Not much good, am I?! I do know I used less than I’d anticipated, so have lots of leftovers. Especially since the yarn comes in hefty 200g balls!
Hook: 4.5mm KnitPro hook with soft handle. Very nice hooks these, and extremely inexpensive. Shame they aren’t more widely available here.

Time: 5 May 2013 – 26 September 2013. I had 414 squares to make so set myself the target of around 100 each month, leaving myself a month to seam and finish. And it worked pretty much according to plan, thankfully. I am glad I didn’t leave it any longer to start, that’s for sure!

I also gave the Hexagons.Grey blanket to my brother to give to his daughter for her (very belated) wedding present – only about 3 years after the fact! (In my defence, it was a “surprise!” wedding). I hope she and her husband are happy with it.

I must be some sort of glutton for punishment when it comes to crochet blankets, because I have started another one…no seaming required on this one though!

It’s another deadline project (OF COURSE!) but for the best kind of recipient:

Yes, Connor is going to be a big brother! This little fellow is due to arrive mid February, and we couldn’t be happier.


Filed under Crochet, Family, FO2013

Repairing a damaged granny square blanket

After one of my classes recently, the shop where I teach asked me if I could repair a damaged granny square blanket – I had a look at it and two of the squares needed mending – thanks to the owner’s dog.

Bad doggie!

I have never done this before, although I vaguely remember reading a post on Ravelry or a blog about it, a few years ago now. I had a bit of a think and worked out a way to do it without needing to undo the crochet seaming and replace the entire damaged squares.

And I’m very pleased to report that I managed to do it, almost within the time allowance I’d estimated!

Just finished it tonight – I’m feeling a bit chuffed about it!


Filed under Crochet

Wish me luck

See this pile of 5cm x 5cm (2″ x 2″) squares?

There’s 414 of them (I hope! Actually, I think I somehow managed to make a few spares!).

I have a month to sew them all together and crochet around the edge, to make this blanket for my oldest nephew’s wedding present:

Wish me luck? I think I’m going to need it!


Filed under Crochet